I’m not going to be staying in a dorm room or my own apartment this year, so if you’re looking for a packing list look here (link). This list is simply to help you make the most out of your College experience.
Take advantage of perks cards. For example, Win Dixie & Tom Thumb both have gas rewards cards that give you a discount for using them. Walgreens & CVS both have rewards cards with pretty good benefits. Also, if you shop at Target a lot, it might be worth it for you to get a Target debit card. You can only use it at Target, but it gives you 5% every time you use it.
Don’t buy anything from the Campus Bookstore that is not absolutely essential. Some classes have certain books that were made especially for your school, so you may have to purchase them there. But I would make sure to wait until after the first day of classes to get campus only books. Students who previously took the class will most likely be selling them for a discounted price. I personally like to use Amazon for buying and reselling textbooks, as they have a special Amazon student price. (Amazon student is Amazon Prime but 1/2 price) Chegg is also a good place to sell your used textbooks if you don’t find someone on campus to sell to.
Make Friends in Class. I know this might seem impossible in huge classes or if there is a time crunch in between classes, but this is super important. I’m not saying you have to become best buds, just friendly enough to be able to add them on Facebook without being creepy. These ‘one semester friends’ can be study partners, support systems and super helpful when you forget a pencil the day of finals! Most people in college are actually in a similar situation as you, as neither of you have your high school clique around. Remember that they’re probably just as lonely as you are! Lastly, don’t get discouraged if the first person you meet doesn’t become your bestie, just keep trying! (and you never know, you might meet a life long friend!)
Cary a map of the school with you. Not only will this help you the first day freshman year, but many more in the future. Keep a laminated/plastic protected copy in your backpack until you are completely confident in the entire campus. (This will also help you remember where you parked on the first day!)
Don’t plan anything during finals. Seriously, don’t do it. You think you’ll be able to manage it all like you did in high school, but you won’t. Just study. It’s fine to meet your friends at Panera for a study sesh, as long as you do just that. Study. Also, don’t slack off all semester and then try to cram for finals. It doesn’t work and you’ll be exhausted if you try. (Also, studies do say that you will forget most of the stuff you try to remember by cramming anyways. I learned that in my Freshman Psychology class. I made an A.)
Go To Class. Again, this seems like me trying to take away your fun. It isn’t. Some teachers give students with good attendance more slack on tests than students who don’t show up. Also, teachers sometimes put things on tests that you would only know if you heard them lecture (aka, not in the book). Oh, and don’t forget about the pop quizzes. Teachers actually do give them and they can really help bring up your grade. Not to mention some schools/teachers have an attendance policy set in place. So pay attention on the first day(syllabus day) to see if your teacher does.
Keep deodorant, hair ties and breath mints in your backpack. You’ll thank me later. I have Wintergreen Altoids because they taste yummy and are super strong. I have used them more times then I would like to count.
Invest in one of those french manicure white tip pens. They’re really easy and you always look like you have a salon mani/pedi. You can get one here (link)
That’s all I have for you! If you have any tips to surviving freshman year, leave them in the comments and I will add them to the list! Good luck freshman! Much Love, Darby